UHV education students excel on teacher certification test

Fred Litton

The vast majority of University of Houston-Victoria education students who took state certification tests to become teachers passed it on the first try, according to the most recent figures released April 9.

In fact, 92 percent of UHV students taking the initial certification tests for the first time passed the exams in 2009-2010.

“Attaining 92 percent speaks well of the work of the faculty in producing high-quality graduates for the public schools of Texas,” said Fred Litton, dean of the UHV School of Education & Human Development. “It also serves as external validation of our teacher preparation program.”

All students wanting to teach early childhood through twelfth grade are required to take the Texas Education Agency exams in order to become certified teachers in Texas.

Diane Prince

“The majority of the students will take two exams, and some will take three exams,” said Diane Prince, a UHV education professor, who serves as the school’s certification officer. “We are doing well to be in this pass-rate range.”

During the two years representing the most recent report, 214 UHV students took the state exams. Prince said the 92 percent initial pass rate is roughly the same as previous reports, and it compares favorably to the national average.

Melanie Castaneda, a second grade teacher at Vickers Elementary School who took the test in 2010 before she graduated from UHV, said she’s not surprised the initial pass rate exceeded 90 percent.

“The professors not only prepared us for the concepts that were on the exams, but they also guided us to study materials that would be the most beneficial,” Castaneda said. “Everyone I met at UHV was helpful.”

Under Title II of the Higher Education Act, all institutions of higher education are required to submit information to the federal government about teacher education programs. The results of the test are reported in the Report Card for the States. The state reports the total pass rate for all certificates in September of each year.

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.

Jeremy Shapiro